Nigerians complain bitterly over new tariffs on imported vehicles


Car-Imports1-300x225Mixed reactions on Tuesday trailed the decision of the Federal Government to review the tariffs on imported vehicles from January 2014.

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The Lead Director, Centre for Social Justice, Mr Eze Onyekpere, told Naija247news  in Abuja that the new Federal Government’s Automotive policy was a positive step.

Onyekpere said that the policy would encourage local industrialists, adding that the policy had a long-term trust of increasing the production capacity of local car manufacturing companies.

Naija247news  reports that the Federal Government on Monday released the details of new duties and levies payable on imported new and used vehicles.

The Federal Government reviewed the new import tariff on cars to 70 per cent.

A fully-built car would attract a duty of 35 per cent and a levy of another 35 per cent of the cost of the vehicle.

Onyekpere said the idea was to encourage local contents, create jobs and create more avenues for the government to derive more revenue from the manufacturing companies.

He blamed the masses for the economic situation of the country, saying that Nigerians had failed to live up to their responsibilities.

“There is a government policy which has an overall long-term trust in increasing capacity in the production of vehicles, both buses and cars.

“The idea is to create local contents, create jobs and create more avenues for government to derive more taxes from the companies that manufacture such vehicles.

“It is a win-win situation as government will derive more taxation, Nigerians will get more job opportunities and there is reduction on the money spent in bringing in new vehicles,’’ he said.

Onyekpere said other countries developed their automobile industries the same way, adding that Nigeria could not continue to import cars.

He also said the only way to encourage local industries was to formulate policies that would reduce importation of cars to create market for the locally-manufactured cars.

A manager in one of the leading Automobile Companies in Abuja, who pleaded anonymity, held a different opinion.

He told our reporter that the policy would have negative impact on the country, explaining that a lot of Nigerians would find it difficult to buy new cars as the policy would lead to hike in prices of imported cars.

He said if customers could not buy cars, the market would be affected and that could lead to unemployment.

“By the time the government increases the tariff next year, you and I cannot buy a new car and that means job loss,’’ he said. (Naija247news)

Babatunde Akinsola
Babatunde Akinsola
Babatunde Akinsola is aNaija247news' Southwest editor. He's based in Lagos and writes on the Yoruba Nation political issues, news and investigative reports

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